Design Matters: The Organisation and Principles of Engineering Design

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Articles

  1. Design Toolkit | Enterprise Community Partners
  2. Sustainable Design
  3. Designing for B2B and Enterprise SaaS
  4. The Almanac

Our physical bodies constantly strive for consistent balance, so we can be healthy. We need to feel that things are consistent to feel secure and safe.

Design Toolkit | Enterprise Community Partners

Users will learn faster how to use your design. Imagine, that the consistent elements in your design are the letters of the alphabet. Once, the user has learned the alphabet, he can go anywhere in your product and still be able to communicate with the interface without friction.


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Having inconsistent interface is like trying to communicate with the user in several languages. Only the advanced users will be able to finish their tasks. Keep it simple and consistent. Consistency eliminates confusion! When the user feels confused the next step is to feel frustration. Consistency saves money and time! Consistent design is frequently built by predefined components. This allows designers and stakeholders to make decisions quickly without spending precious time to argue.

This saves time that can be used to build the product and make incremental improvements. Let's look at four type of consistency that are important to be aware of when designing. Similar elements that are perceived the same way make up the visual consistency. It increases learnability of the product. Fonts, sizes, buttons, labeling and similar need to be consistent across the product to keep visual consistency. Similar controls that are functioning the same way make up the functional consistency.

It increases the predictability of the product.

Sustainable Design

Predictability leads to users feeling safe and secure. For example, the way to go a step back in the flow should function the same way across the product. This is the combination of both visual and functional consistency in your product design. It improves the usability and learnability of the product.

The Organization Design Toolkit for HR

Yes, this helps eliminate a lot of the friction and provides great user experience. Good example of external consistency is the user interface of Adobe products. Once you know Photoshop it is much easier to reuse the same knowledge to start using Illustrator and so on. Achieving these four types of consistency will help your design gain better usability and more happy users. The essence of being consistent is to be able to replicate the same action or element multiple times, and still be able to support the user with achieving the task.

Typography, colors, space, grid, size and positions. Define strong visual hierarchy, the most important things are bigger than the less important ones. Use the same color palette across the product. Padding and margins need to be consistent in all similar elements buttons, cards and etc. Everything should be ordered in a grid of your choice that allows arrangement of all components in a nice and aesthetic way.

Having consistent visuals will allow the user to learn the system quickly and have a smooth experience. Your design will gain nice Feng Shui when you use consistent visuals. Here is a nice source with examples of style guidelines:. The language and tone you use throughout the user flow influences how your user perceives the product.

Keep the voice and tone consistent so it feels as one voice speaking to the user. We don't want them to hear many voices, do we? If you want to keep funny and friendly voice in your product design keep it all the way up til the error and fail messages. MailChimp is a nice example of consistent voice and tone. People who will be using our designs be it digital or not, have been around for some time.

Designing for B2B and Enterprise SaaS

This means they have experienced and learned other designs, and know the patterns used in them. We should take advantage of that and incorporate familiar patterns into our designs.


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Here are two nice sources to look into patterns out of many:. You might argue that consistency could bore the heck out of the user. If we keep things always consistent there will be almost no innovation.


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  8. We first need to learn the rules before we bend them. Yes, bend not break them! Broken consistency equals broken design and user experience. It is a pain for both the user and the organization.

    The Almanac

    Design process gets slowed down. Tons of money get burned to pay people to argue in meeting rooms over what color is best for that button. Everybody loses precious time to make decisions that should have been made already and just be reused now.

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    Description Table of Contents Product Details Click on the cover image above to read some pages of this book! Contributors p. All Rights Reserved. In Stock. Designing for the Common Good. Cradle to Cradle. Airline Style at 30, Feet. Fusion for Makers Make:. Screw-cutting in the Lathe Workshop Practice.

    Functional consistency